Traditionally, enterprise architecture (EA) has been largely defined as an IT role. Its purpose was to help organizations’ IT infrastructure and modernization of projects. These days, enterprise architecture is evolving into something bigger. It’s moving away from a practice heavily rooted in day-to-day IT management, and is now becoming more strategic in helping organizations innovate their business models through digital transformation. As we see it, EA is undergoing a transformation that is rewiring the way companies approach their tech-driven landscape. Read on to see how Enterprise Architecture is evolving and what it means for your organization.
By 2021, an estimated 40% of companies will rely on enterprise architecture to drive digital transformation within their organizations. With this paradigm shift comes a new use for EA as a practice necessary for delivering transformation, which has caused enterprise architecture to be affectionately referred to as AE, or “architect everything”.
Making the Jump from Enterprise Architecture to Architect Everything
In their enterprise architecture report, Ovum looked at the paradigm shift going on now that’s responsible for transforming EA into architect everything. They reviewed seven EA solutions that have begun the transition from EA to AE.
Interestingly, Ovum found that the vendors shared a similar idea on the direction that EA should move toward. Most regarded non-EA features that help with business modeling, business process mapping and analysis, GRC, and portfolio management to be standard features that EA platforms should include in their solutions.
Here are the four key capabilities your EA solution should include to get to an ‘architect everything’ scenario:
Is it suitable for general business users?
Two of the major reasons behind the transition to AE is the push for more collaboration and inclusivity. After all, it’s called architect everything for a reason. A good enterprise architecture practice combined with a robust and powerful software solution should support general business users alongside architects, developers, project managers, and financial managers.
And, it can be done without having extensive technical knowledge and experience with enterprise architecture.
Ovum also noted that vendors which made an effort to accommodate business users were in a better position to quantify the ROI for their customers.
Does it facilitate transformation?
Businesses are faced with the challenge of keeping up with changes in technology and customer preferences, which means they need a solution that can facilitate that transformation rather than work against it. For this to happen, enterprise architecture software needs to address both a digital and business transformation and empower users to make informed decisions in real-time. This requires EA software to include a broader set of capabilities for analyzing and modeling business, such as transformation mapping, impact analysis, and road mapping. This helps keep all involved parties aligned so the organization is better equipped to deliver products and reach their strategic goals.
Does it provide an outside-in perspective?
Businesses like to focus on the things they can control, like their capabilities, culture, and strategic vision. While these are elements that generally remain consistent over time, they can give companies a limited perspective when it comes to planning for the future. To counter this, many enterprise architecture platforms are integrating features that give businesses an outside-in perspective. Features like customer journey mapping and ecosystem mapping can help companies better understand what external factors can influence their business performance.
Can it enhancecollaboration and workflow?
Today’s enterprise architecture approach needs to promote stronger collaboration and teamwork throughout the organization, so that everyone is on the same page with regard to company goals and desired outcomes. One example on an EA platform that does this effectively is Planview Portfolios. Planview Portfolios comes with collaboration and workflow tools that enable process and project-driven work. Elements like Kanban boards and collaborative workspaces make it easy to bring stakeholders and contributors together under one roof, where they can share information and work together to push the company forward.
Putting It All Together
The shift from EA to architect everything is changing the way companies interact with enterprise architecture software, and could revolutionize the way organizations collaborate, plan, and realize transformation in the future. As such, effective EA platforms have moved away from being IT tools to broader business solutions that can help teams in all levels of the company.
Of the seven platforms tested by Ovum, Planview Portfolios and two others were considered to be leaders in the industry. Planview Portfolios is a comprehensive enterprise architecture solution that brings architects, project managers, financial managers, developers, GRC practitioners, and general business users together. It provides them all with the tools needed to make informed plans and decisions in a fast-paced environment.
About Planview’s solution for Enterprise Architecture
Planview Portfolios also includes a powerful Capability and Technology Management (CTM) capabilities that makes it easy for you to make the switch to AE by:
- Enabling continuous collaboration between EA and technology teams that drives strategy to delivery
- Optimizing the application portfolio by providing data-driven metrics against technology costs, risks, and impacts
- Accelerating digital strategy with business and technology roadmaps that enable organization-wide alignment with strategic priorities
- Giving strategic planning teams insight on the performance and functionality of the capabilities critical to business outcomes
Planview’s Capability and Technology Management solution helps companies cut back on costs, mitigate risks, and plan better so businesses are better equipped to stay up to date in this fast-moving professional landscape.
Want to learn more? Check out Ovum’s Market Radar: Enterprise Architecture report. There, you can learn more about EA’s exciting new direction and see Ovum’s heatmap for the EA solutions market.
You can learn more about Planview’s Capability and Technology Management solution, and how it can be used to help you facilitate an Architect Everything approach, by: